Did You Know There Was a Michael Myers Young Adult Book Series?

Jason McDonald

We’re celebrating a pretty obscure anniversary here.  Twenty years ago this October Michael Myers entered the world of Young Adult books with a three book series centering on teens running afoul of the infamous killer.

While slasher flicks tend to appeal to a younger demographic, it’s still weird to imagine Michel starring in a Young Adult book series.  I can just imagine a book where young love struck teens are contemplating how to build the courage to tell the girl they like how much they care and then . . . MICHAEL STABS THEM IN THE FACE! OH GOD!

However, you can’t think of Young Adult books as we think of them now with books like “Hunger Games’ and “The Divergent” series.  You gotta remember that in 1997 this was at the tail end of the “Goosebump” series when kids were all about that horror stuff.  And if you’re a publisher thinking “Man, we gotta get some of that ‘Goosebumps’ money.”   You’re looking to grab any license that can help you print money.

So it makes sense that the “Halloween” films got this kind of treatment.  At the time this would’ve just been before the release of “Halloween H20” in 1998, so it was perfect timing to start boarding that train.  Then there’s the simple concept of the “Halloween” films themselves.  Of course the books released were primarily about Michael myers, but if need be, they could have gone on to create non-Michael related stories taking place on Halloween night. Like “Season of the Witch.”

Whatever the grand plan for the series may have been, the whole thing was rather short lived. There are only three books that belong to the series and they’re all written by an author named Kelly O’Rourke.  I tried finding out more about this person, but it appears that these three books were all they wrote.  Who knows, maybe Kelly O’Rourke was a penname and the real writer is still out there.  However, as far as I can tell Kelly seems to have not written any books before or after this series. Spooky.

The first book was released on October 1, 1997 and was titled “The Scream Factory.”  Unrelated to the DVD company, but they should totally get their lawyers on the phone.  Here’s a basic plot synopsis:

When Lori and her friends are asked to create a haunted house in the basement of Haddonfield’s city hall, they jump at the chance.  But an old pro soon turns their little horror show into a bloody death trap.  Michael Myers has returned to Haddonfield – and it’s a homecoming they won’t soon forget.

Let’s take a look at the cover.

Halloween Book 1

I understand Michael being pissed about people breaking into his house, but interrupting a school event? That’s a bit of stretch Mike.  I love that Michael is just bursting through the door like a grumpy old man chasing the kids off his lawn. And this is the late 90s, why is that kid dressed up like the Fonz?

The next book makes a bit more sense for Michael.  “The Old Myers Place.”  Once again playing into the idea that Michael is just a crazy old man now, but at least the people are in his house this time.

Mary White just moved to Haddonfield. Being the new girl is tough, but she finally seems to be settling in. She’s friends with a popular girl. She’s dating a gorgeous guy. Everything is perfect. But Mary’s family moved into the old Myers place. In fact, Mary’s sleeping in the very bedroom where Michael Myers killed his sister. Now he’s coming back to make sure she sleeps like the dead.
She’s dating a gorgeous guy! I kind of wonder if these books started out about teen romance and they were like “Eh, we need a hook… why don’t we jam a masked killer into these things? The kids will eat it up.”
And really, who the hell would move into the Myers place at this point?  Can it possibly be that cheap? This was the late 90s, things were going well, you could’ve bought a better house.  Honestly, her parents were just asking for it at this point. Let’s look at the cover.
Halloween Book 2
Okay where in the house are we exactly?  Is this the attic? A crawlspace?  Is Michael standing or kneeling? Is he ambidextrous? Cause he was clearly holding the knife in his other hand in the last cover.  This is the late 90s, why does my man have a candle stick?  Also, I like how  he’s clearly leading the way, he’s got the light, he’s holding the brick for defense, and Mary is grabbing on to him.  It’s like, damn girl, can you help out here?
In the final book things take an interesting twist as we visit a location that has become sort of an enigma in the Michael mythos.  The title is “The Mad House” and marks a return to Grove Smith Mental Hospital. Here’s the synopsis:
Christine Ray’s summer has been nothing but lame dates and boring camping trips. She wants at least one interesting adventure before it’s over. Then she sees the ad: “Volunteer film crew needed for documentary on haunted sites. Spend the night at Smith Grove Mental Hospital . . . if you dare”. She definitely dares. That place is the ultimate scare site–Michael Myers himself was locked up there 15 years. But what she and her filmmaking friends don’t know is that Michael Myers still has a room at Smith Grove–and visiting hours are over…
Once again we see a girl struggling with romance, but at least in this one she seems to say ‘F’ that noise’ and go off on an adventure rather than spend her summer chasing boys.  Although, she probably could’ve picked a better adventure.  Honestly, of all the books this sounds like a potentially interesting premise for a new sequel.  It’s almost like “Halloween: Resurrection” which is about a film crew entering the Myers house, but this time we enter the insane asylum that housed Mike.   Let’s take a look at the cover.
Halloween Mad House book
Once again, the knife is back in the other hand.  There’s also a running theme where Michael never seems to know what to do with his non-stabbing hand.  It’s always just thrown about wildly which helps with that crazy old man look.  Also, can we talk about this dude up front who can’t seem to scale a fence with easy footholds.  He’s even squatting a bit, he’s taller than that fence! What are you doing, man?
I like the tagline.  They didn’t go with the obvious “Patients check in… but they don’t check out!” Instead they tried to flip the script and say they do “check out.”  Seems less threatening.  Oh the patients checked out, they made a complete recovery thanks to Michael’s unique surprise bush attack therapy.  Or like Michael wants these kids to check out . . . with drugs.
So, if at the end of this, you find yourself thinking that you’d love to own a collection of these books I feel like I should warn you… They’re not easy to find. And they sure as hell ain’t cheap.  The Ebay posting I got some information from is currently listing the whole set for $500 bucks. Obtaining this collection appears to be for only the most diehard of “Halloween”  fans.  But I’m curious, are there any of you out there that own this series? Let us know below.


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